Offering a maximum system length of 376 ft. (114.6 m), the Terex HC 285 lattice boom crawler crane comes with a maximum 103.5-ton (94 t) upper and 28-ton (25.4 t) car body counterweight package to offer a 285-ton (258.5 t) lift capacity at a 16-ft. (4.9 m) radius.
When a company sells its services and a project on schedule, that company must deliver. If the company fails to finish the project on time, this not only affects the current project, but it also jeopardizes the ability to secure future contracts.
Recently Big B Crane and sister company Basden Steel Corporation, both of Burleson, Texas, teamed up with Deem Structural Services of Longview, Texas, to sell their services on schedule for a 290,000-sq. ft. (26,942 sq m), 2,100-ton (1,905 t) building expansion project for a leading global aerospace company. Basden Steel provided fast-track design, assist and fabrication services for the contract, which began in May 2015 and closed just five months later. The full building project is expected to be complete in the summer of 2016.
The contract included an extremely tight steel and building slab erection schedule for the two-story structure. Big B Crane provided the lifting services for the eight-week pick plan.
“We had to complete 1,300 picks within a very short time period,” said Daniel Basden, president of Big B Crane, “and 120 picks included objects weighing 11,000 pounds or greater.”
Ben McGregor, vice president of Basden Steel's Oklahoma division, added, “We set a lofty goal of lifting 50 pieces a day to make the schedule.”
The original plan to complete the project was to use two, 150-ton (136 t) capacity class cranes to lift the smaller pieces. When it came time to lift and position the heavy structural pieces, of which the heaviest weighed 12,500 lb. (5.7 t), then both cranes would be used in a tandem lift. This would have posed somewhat of a challenge for Big B Crane to stay on schedule, since Basden Steel and Deem Structural's crews had such a short window to complete the erection work.
“You have to coordinate the swing radius when working with two cranes, so there is a lot of crane downtime,” said McGregor. “If a single crane can be used, this reduces the time for many of the picks, and it increases lifting safety.”
This got Daniel Basden thinking about Big B Crane's current fleet and the changing construction industry needs in the Texas and Oklahoma markets.
“Concrete precast panels are getting bigger and heavier and steel is getting longer, so we were seeing a need for a higher capacity crawler crane than the two 250-ton class models we have in our fleet,” he said.
Plus, those two cranes didn't deliver the capacity needed on the building expansion project to eliminate the need for tandem lifts with the smaller cranes.
HC 285 Crane Just Right
Daniel Basden searched for a higher capacity crane to eliminate the need to use the two 150-ton (136 t) capacity cranes for the building expansion project. The original consideration was to jump to a 300-ton (272 t) class crane, but this came with a sobering discovery.
“The jump to the 300-ton capacity comes with a significant additional capital investment,” he said.
When Big B Crane representatives met with Terex Cranes distributor, Scott-Macon Equipment of Houston, Texas, and Terex representatives, there was a lot of discussion about the lifting company's capacity needs for its market. All parties then started to look at a new 285-ton (259 t) capacity crane Terex recently introduced to the market.
“The new HC 285 crane is a good in-between crane that gives customers virtually the capacity of a 300-ton class crane but at a price similar to that of a smaller crawler crane, so a company can receive a high return on investment,” said Jim Strobush, senior product manager, crawler cranes for Terex Cranes, North America.
Offering a maximum system length of 376 ft. (114.6 m), the Terex HC 285 lattice boom crawler crane comes with a maximum 103.5-ton (94 t) upper and 28-ton (25.4 t) car body counterweight package to offer a 285-ton (258.5 t) lift capacity at a 16-ft. (4.9 m) radius. While the crane's lift chart rivals that of 300-ton cranes, its compact carrier can be transported in a single load.
“The base crane carrier measures less than 10.5 feet wide by 12 feet high, which enables it to be transported on a standard low-boy trailer, and the entire crane is designed with quick transportation in mind,” explained Strobush.
Basden added, “Many 300-ton crane carriers ship in two pieces, which adds one more load, another driver, additional set-up time and more expense.”
Since Big B Crane's equipment is often used by Basden Steel on high profile projects like the building expansion, McGregor noticed safety enhancements built into lifting equipment.
“Safety requirements are high on our projects, and I see a lot of safety enhancements on the HC 285 crane,” he said.
This includes a new tram fall protection system where the full length of boom is equipped with 20-in.-wide (50.8 cm) heavy-duty non-slip aluminum walkways and a track-guided travel tram that offers single-point harness hookup for full-length access to the boom during assembly and disassembly.
After analyzing all the capabilities and safety enhancements of the new Terex crawler crane, Big B Crane fast-tracked the crane order through Scott-Macon Equipment for the building expansion project.
“Finishing the building expansion on schedule meant we needed that crane for the project,” said Basden. “Scott-Macon and Terex worked with us to get the crane to the job site when needed, and Scott-Macon's service department has really taken care of our crane equipment needs over the years.”
The HC 285 crane was shipped directly from the Terex Oklahoma City facility, which just happened to be less than 10 mi. (16 km) from the project site. It was immediately assembled and put to work.
Ahead of Schedule
The lift plan for Basden Steel included positioning and slowly moving the HC 285 crane down the center of the building to lift the steel, joists, decking and staircases to the left and right of center for the new two-story structure. For the project, full upper and car body counterweight was used, and Big B Crane equipped the machine with the full 100 ft. (30.5 m) 16 HL jib and 180 ft. (54.9 m) of main boom.
“We averaged working at a 180-foot radius for the lifts,” said McGregor.
Basden said, “The HC 285 has a phenomenal lift chart. There is no way we could have finished this project as efficiently as we did without this crane being on site.”
McGregor mentioned there weren't any significant challenges when it came to the individual lifts. The major hurdle was sticking to the extremely short lifting schedule, so the frame construction phase could be finished on time.
“We planned to lift 50 pieces a day, and we started lifting three days behind schedule,” he said. “Three weeks into the lifting phase, we were 164 pieces, or three days, ahead of schedule by using the HC 285 crane. We finished hanging our last piece of steel about one week ahead of schedule.”
In about seven weeks, the trio of Big B Crane, Basden Steel and Deem Structural lifted and placed 2,100 tons of steel with the aid of the Big B Crane's new Terex HC 285 crane.
“The crane gave us the combination of excellent reach and capacity, exactly what was needed for this project,” said Basden.
The week of October 19, Big B Crane's crew began to disassemble the HC 285 crane to ship it to the company's Burleson yard.
“Move out was smooth and went as planned,” said McGregor. “Having the HC 285 crane at the project saved us the time and expense for demobilization of a second crane. Everything on this project went according to plan. I wish all our projects could go this smoothly.”
About Big B Crane
Big B Crane has a diverse line of modern crawler, truck and rough terrain cranes to assist a broad customer base ranging from the oil market to industrial to construction. Big B leases its equipment with or without NCCCO-Certified operators.
Terex Corporation is a lifting and material handling solutions company reporting in five business segments: aerial work platforms, construction, cranes, material handling and port solutions and materials processing. Terex manufactures a broad range of equipment serving customers in various industries, including the construction, infrastructure, manufacturing, shipping, transportation, refining, energy, utility, quarrying and mining industries. Terex offers financial products and services to assist in the acquisition of Terex equipment through Terex Financial Services.
For more information, visit www.terex.com and http://www.bigbcrane.com.
(This story also can be found on Construction Equipment Guide's Web site at www.constructionequipmentguide.com.)